News in New York – First Cannabis Sale, LaSalle Nomination, Admin Appointments

January 3, 2023

First Legal Cannabis Dispensary Opens

On December 29, New York State’s first legal cannabis dispensary opened for business. Housing Works Cannabis Company has formally opened its doors in lower Manhattan, operated by the nonprofit organization Housing Works, which helps people with a history of substance abuse or who were formerly incarcerated. Other legal adult-use dispensaries are expected to open in the coming months. This event comes two years after recreational marijuana was legalized in New York.

Oppositions to LaSalle Chief Judge Confirmation

Several New York State Senators have committed to opposing the confirmation of Judge Hector LaSalle. Judge LaSalle was nominated by the Governor last week as Chief Judge for the Court of Appeals. Senate Deputy Majority Leader Mike Gianaris is the most recent Senator to announce his opposition. Currently, 12 Democratic Senators have pledged not to support his nomination. This likely means that Republican Senators would need to vote for LaSalle to ensure his confirmation. Despite the controversy, Governor Hochul has stated that she stands by her nominee.

Mayor Adams Announces Two Administration Appointments

Last Tuesday, Mayor Adams announced two new administration appointments. Jasmine Ray will serve as Director of the newly-created Mayor’s Office of Sports, Wellness, and Recreation. In this role, Ray will be implementing sports and wellness initiatives throughout the city. She was previously the Executive Director of Cornerstone Daycare and an executive board member of the Black and Minority Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, Karen Ford will be Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Nonprofit Services, engaging and communicating with the city’s nonprofits. Ford worked as Chief Operating Officer of HELP USA, a national homeless services and housing organization.


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